James O'Brien's Two Lessons Learned From Uber

26 June 2018, 12:30

James O'Brien names the two lessons he's learned from Uber as its UK boss admits that the decision to not renew its London licence was correct.

Uber's UK boss admitted that the decision to not renew its London licence was correct, as the taxi-hailing app begins an appeal to get it restored.

But James O'Brien believes we can learn two lessons from the debacle.

"Your traditional terms and conditions are worth diddly-squat when the technology changes," he says.

"All the things you took for granted when you started your career crumble like dust if some invention, some technological innovation comes along that can be used to find a loophole in what you thought was a cast iron contract."

James O'Brien
Picture: LBC

"Lesson number two is, because it comes from the West coast of America, I've always fallen into the trap of thinking that they're all righteous duded," he said.

"How the hell could you ever have thought this this was going to be some sort of latter day peace and love movement?

"They're just as rapacious and greedy as everybody else."

TfL stripped Uber of its licence on the grounds of public safety in September last year. Picture: PA

TfL ruled last September that it was stripping Uber of its London licence with concerns of public safety and security.

Tom Elvidge, Uber's general manager in the UK, told Westminster Magistrates Court: "I agree that Uber London Limited (ULL) and Uber generally was undergoing a period of significant change and, in light of what was available to TfL given the mistakes that ULL made, I absolutely accept that decision in September."